Thursday, 2 October 2008

Volvo Ocean Race Jury Decision JN04

It's time to have a look at the Volvo Ocean Race.
For a couple of day's I've been reading up on the Volvo Ocean Race Official Noticeboard. All official notices to competitors are published there. No physical board could do that job for this special race, so a virtual one has been created. Accessible by all who have an Internet connection.

Today a Jury decision was published regarding the Keel of Ericsson Racing Team (ERT). Perhaps you have heard the story already?

In short: Keels have to be completely solid to comply with the rules of the Measurement Certificate. Ericsson's had a couple of holes in it, which the team attempted to fill with steel rods. That procedure however did not do the job completely, apparently the diameter of the rods were to small and some voids were left. Voids creating a 0,625 kg weight advantage, which now has been compensated with a corrector weight in the boat. But even with that corrector weight the boat still does not comply with the Measurement Certificate.

In order to race without a valid Measurement Certificate the Jury has to give permission. They gave permission in this decision, but also imposed an additional condition. As long as the keel remains in non-compliance with the rule, ERT will be scored with extra points:

From the Jury decision:
" Whilst benefiting from this permission, ERT shall be penalized by the deduction of one point at the conclusion of any day in which there has been one or more In Port races; by one point at each Scoring Waypoint; and by two points at the conclusion of each Leg. However her score shall not be less than 'zero points' in each instance."

You can read the whole document: VOR-3-decision

Pretty strict, don't you think? No measurable advantage from those small voids in the keel, compensated with adequate weight correction and on top of that a scoring penalty?

The Jury emphasized in it's motivation:
"In recognition of the importance that the Jury places on all boats in a race being fully rule compliant and in possession of a Measurement Certificate, the Jury considers it appropriate to impose a further condition"

The Measurement Certificate is a vital part of this race and must be valid. No slack, the differences would be uncontrollable otherwise. I agree. What is your opinion?

Foto: Rick Tomlinson/Volvo Ocean Race

Latest news: Ericsson are seeking a reopening



Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...